President of ATD-Fourth World and former radio producer, Claire Hédon was chosen by the Élysée to succeed Jacques Toubon as head of the Defender of Rights, an institution which has recently turned into a watchdog of public freedoms.
This appointment proposed by Prime Minister Édouard Philippe has yet to be ratified by the “committee concerned“Of the National Assembly and the Senate, as provided for in the Constitution, said Tuesday, June 30, the Elysee in a statement. If the appointment of Claire Hédon was ratified, she would take over from the former right-wing minister Jacques Toubon, who must leave the head of this independent authority at the end of July.
Former radio journalist, notably on RFI, Claire Hédon presented the program from 2003 to 2017 Health priority on RFI. Since 2015, she has chaired the ATD-Quart Monde association, which fights against extreme poverty. She discovered the association through a street library, in the slums, during a report in Bangkok in 1992, before participating for twelve years in its popular universities.
In an interview with the New republic in 2017, she explained how her journalism practice had brought her “in the field of communication» : «There has always been a link between my work and ATD. My twenty years in the movement have influenced the way I work. Even if they express themselves poorly, people have things to say.Present in around thirty countries, the ATD Fourth World movement has campaigned throughout its history for the creation of the RMI [devenu RSA], universal health coverage, and the enforceable right to housing.
Claire Hédon had welcomed Emmanuel Macron in an ATD-Fourth World center in Noisy-le-Grand (Seine-Saint-Denis) in September 2018, on the sidelines of the presentation of the government’s poverty reduction strategy. Figure of civil society, it contrasts radically with the profile of the great clerk of the State of Jacques Toubon. Enarque, deputy of Paris, historic mayor of the thirteenth arrondissement, this Chiraquien born in 1941 was successively Minister of Culture and then of Justice from 1993 to 1997, before being appointed Defender of Rights by François Hollande in 2014.
Defense of freedoms
During his 6-year mandate, the Defender of Rights made his voice heard to defend rights and freedoms in the context of relations with administrations, fight against discrimination or even ensure compliance with ethics by people carrying out activities of security.
He therefore very early called for the ban on defense ball launchers (LBD), the use of which against “yellow vests“Was controversial, and recently worried about”systemic dimension»Discrimination in France. But he also criticized the facies controls, for which he wants a “traceability», The management of migrant camps or the poor reception of foreign minors.
In his annual report in early June, he noted a jump of about 30% of files related to the “safety ethics“, During a marked year the demonstrations of”yellow vests” In the middle of a controversy over police violence, he pointed out that “a crisis of public confidence in the security forces“And calls for”awareness of the authorities“To get out of”“ warrior ” logic” So many themes that Claire Hédon has already brewed at the head of ATD-Fourth World, according to an official of the association.
«The defense of fundamental rights is also the central vocation of ATD-Quart Monde, this is what must have played in the choice of Edouard Philippe“, Said the official, adding that”discrimination against the most vulnerableAre at the heart of ATD’s missions.
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